Research from the University of Missouri now points to a link between the use of a common form of vitamin B3 supplements and an increased risk of serious illnesses like cancer.
A team of researchers led by Associate Professor of chemistry at the University of Missouri Elena Goun found that high levels of a dietary supplement called nicotinamide riboside (NR), a form of vitamin B3, can cause an increase in the risk of developing triple-negative breast cancer.
Researchers found that the risk of cancer metastasizing to spread to the brain is increased as well.
Goun said, "Some people take them because they automatically assume that vitamins and supplements only have positive health benefits, but very little is known about how they actually work."
"Our work is especially important given the wide commercial availability and a large number of ongoing human clinical trials where NR is used to mitigate the side effects of cancer therapy in patients," Goun said.
NR is a supplement that is known for assisting in increasing cellular energy levels. Cancer cells feed off of the energy.
The research team used bioluminescent imaging technology to study how NR works inside the body.